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Why does my air conditioner turn off after about 15 minutes?

Is your air conditioner turning off by itself no more than 10-15 minutes after you turned it on? If yes, then your air conditioner might have a common problem known as “short cycling.”

Short cycling refers to when an air conditioner’s cooling cycle terminates prematurely only to turn on again after a short time. Depending on indoor and outdoor conditions, this could mean that your unit turns on and off every 15 minutes or less.

Short cycling is bad news for your air conditioner as well as your wallet. Here are two reasons why:

  1. Because it takes more power to turn on your air conditioner over and over as opposed to when it is running efficiently as it does in longer cycles, a huge amount of energy is spent like water, which will ultimately drive up your energy bills.
  2. This on/off cycle causes extra wear and tear on the mechanisms of your air conditioner, shortening its lifespan and necessitating an early replacement.

Since short cycling can lead to some pretty expensive damage, it should be addressed and fixed ASAP. To that end, in this blog, we are going to take a look at some of the most common reasons for short cycling and what you can do to fix the issue.

Are you looking for a professional AC repair company in Corsicana, TX, to stop your AC from short cycling? Schedule an appointment with Area Wide Services today or visit our HVAC repair page for more information about our services.

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Common Reasons for AC That Keeps Shutting Off

Short cycling can be caused by a LOT of different things. So it is difficult to troubleshoot without seeing and hearing the problem. However, we will go through some of the most common causes.

Thermostat Settings

Before deciding your air conditioner is broken, double-check the thermostat settings. Try setting the temperature lower and see if the AC stays on longer. Your thermostat may also have timer settings. Check your manual or the menus on the thermostat to see if you can change the timer.

Bad Thermostat Placement

Builders often put the thermostat in the worst places. If the thermostat is in a spot that is usually a different temperature from the rest of the home (i.e., under an AC vent, near a window or on the shady side of the house), then it could be “tricked” into thinking your home is colder or hotter than it actually is. This can cause your air conditioner to turn on and off by itself every 15 minutes.

The solution?

Have your thermostat professionally reinstalled in a central location, away from windows and air vents.

Dirty Air filter

The reason behind your air conditioner turning on and off repeatedly could be as simple as a dirty air filter. A dirty air filter can restrict airflow into your air conditioner, to the point where the evaporator coils freeze up. This would cause the unit to shut off prematurely.

The solution?

Take a look at your air filter. If it looks dirty, have it replaced.

Refrigerant Leak

A refrigerant leak can lower the pressure in your air conditioner, which [similar to a dirty air filter] will cause the evaporator coils to freeze and the AC unit to turn on and off repeatedly.

Some of the signs you probably have a refrigerant leak include:

  • You hear noises coming from the refrigerant pipe.
  • The air coming out of the vents is warm.
  • Your electricity bills are higher than usual.

The solution?

Given that refrigerant is a toxic chemical, if you think you have a refrigerant leak based on the signs mentioned above, it is better to leave your air conditioner repairs to the professionals.

Oversized AC Unit

Is your air conditioner a little big for the space? An oversized air conditioner will cool your home quickly and then shut off. Doesn’t sound like a bad thing, does it? Well, it is! You see, if your air conditioner cools your home too fast, you will run into issues like higher energy bills, increased humidity, and more hot and cold spots in your home.

The solution?

Contact an HVAC expert to perform a cooling load calculation and tell you exactly what AC size is most suitable for your home.

Looking For A Professional To Fix Your Short Cycling Problem In Corsicana, TX?

If your air conditioner is running for a few minutes, turning off for another couple of minutes, and then turning on again, you are experiencing a problem called “short cycling.” It can cost you big money, both in high energy costs and possible repairs. At Area Wide Services, we provide fast, effective AC repairs. Our team of AC repair experts can diagnose what is causing your air conditioner to turn on and off repeatedly, get it running and make sure it is doing a good job of cooling your home efficiently.

Give us a call at (903) 874-5298 to speak with an AC pro today!

 

 

 

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